Taiwan is paying tourists to visit: Here’s how you can get spending money on arrival



Taiwan is offering to pay tourists just over €150 to holiday there this year in a bid to boost visitor numbers.

The East Asian country wants to welcome six million tourists in 2023, and hopes lining their wallets with NT$5,000 (€158) in spendig money will help to win them over.

The Ministry of Transportation and Communication is also giving travel agencies subsidies of up to NT$20,000 (€633) for each group of tourists that arrives in the country.

Announcing the proposal earlier this week, Minister Wang Kwo-tsai explained that the tourists’ spending money will be delivered digitally and can be put towards accommodation and other costs in the country.

He did not specify when the scheme would start. But given the way the cost-of-living crisis is swaying our travel priorities, it may well tip the balance for some European holidaymakers.

Why is Taiwan paying tourists to visit?

It’s all part of a post-pandemic drive to rebuild the country’s tourism sector. Taiwan was one of the last countries to lift its COVID-19 border restrictions in October 2022.

Just under 900,000 people visited in 2022, according to the Taiwan Tourism Board. That’s a steep plummet from 2019 when simpler times brought a record 11.8 million international visitors to Taiwan’s shores.

Premier Chen Chien-jen says the country is trying to get back on track with 10 million tourists by 2025.

Paying tourists to visit might sound like an unusual way to restock the coffers. But a number of countries are using incentives to rebalance tourist levels after the pandemic.

Hong Kong, for example, is giving away 500,000 airline tickets to attract more visitors.




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